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Crackdown on Village postering

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Crackdown on Village postering

BIA co-chair Avery Pitcher says posters make the Village look The Church and Wellesley BIA may soon cover Village poles with wraps that prevent postering. IMAGE 1 OF 2
BIA planning to install pole wraps and relegate posters to community notice boards
Streetlamps and other poles in the Church and Wellesley Village may soon be stripped forever of colourful posters advertising community meetings, dance parties and other local events.

Some community members have been pushing for the Church Wellesley Village Business Improvement Area (BIA) to stop all such postering and “clean up the street.”

At a meet-and-greet Sept 24 at Big Johnson’s, co-chair Avery Pitcher told representatives from local businesses that the poles may soon be covered with eight-foot-high wrapping.

“They are covered with a substance, almost like a sandpaper grid, so that posters can’t adhere to them,” she says. “They will be solid colours in the rainbow theme. That will add colour to the street and provide a cleaner environment. We are trying to clean up all of the ratty, tatty paper.”


Local DJ Craig Dominic, who is also Xtra and Fab's distribution and community relations coordinator, says the move could be a problem for community activists, event organizers and DJs who depend on posters to advertise local events.

“We need to be able to get the word out in as many ways as possible,” he says. “These events bring people to the Village. They bring money to the Village and a sense of community to the Village. The BIA may be hindering that by doing this.”

Pitcher says city poles are not the place to advertise.

“We need to create more mediums to communicate our events in the city and our area,” she says. “But postering, I think, is a dying medium. It really makes an area look grungy.”

Pitcher says the BIA encourages anyone looking to promote their events to advertise on the BIA website or use the community event boards provided by the city.

There are two community event boards in the Church and Wellesley Village.

“Posters can make the area look overloaded,” she says. “When the posters are out of date, people don’t come back and take them down. They just keep postering on top of one another. It just doesn’t make the Village look as clean as we want it to look.

“The city wants to see our area vibrant, clean, clear, safe and beautiful,” she adds.

Dominic disagrees. He says there are better ways to clean up the Village, such as installing more garbage and recycling containers, increasing street cleaning and encouraging public art.


“By considering community advertising ‘trash’ is in itself a problem,” he says. “What they are doing is whitewashing the street, whitewashing queer meeting places. They are taking away space we use to communicate with one another and find out what’s going on in the neighbourhood.”

The new pole wraps, expected to arrive in March, will cover 18 poles on Church Street. They will cost about $24,000. BIA manager David Wootton says the wraps are part of a cost-share program with the city, which is paying half.

Wootton says funding for the wraps has not yet been confirmed. “We won’t know for sure until our budget is approved in March. I think we have a good chance because we are trying to improve the streetscape.”

Other neighbourhoods in the city have already implemented similar initiatives to curb postering.

Ward 27 Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam says the number one complaint she hears from residents is that the posters are a nuisance and make the area look “dirty.”

Wong-Tam says the city provides designated “community boards” that allow people to post notices.

“Right now, businesses are not permitted to poster. There’s an anti-postering bylaw when it comes to commercial operation,” she says. “What stops corporations like Nike from wrapping the pole in a banner? It doesn’t matter if it’s a small business or a big business.

“What I’m hearing from residents and businesses in the area is that they don’t want the postering. It makes the street look dirty and unkept . . . The community boards are the proper place to put community notices.”

Wong-Tam says the BIA is smart to invest in beautification.

“In 2014, when the eyes of the gay world are on Church Street for WorldPride, what image will we project?” she says. “There’s no doubt we’ll host a great party. But what else will Toronto be about? This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

Pole wraps have already helped reduce postering in other areas of the city, she says. In Greektown, poles are wrapped in Greek flags.
 
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Comments

Crime?
I agree, the poles are a mess and I'll be happy to finally see all that crap gone. More than the poles businesses need to spruce up their storefronts to make them more friendly looking and interesting, see what Woody's has done as an example. Crime is the real issue in the Village over the 10 or so years, where is any police presence? Each year there are more and more problems not only on the street but in all of the apartments in the area which have now mostly had to hire security at night but it has already turned into a cat & mouse game trying to keep the trespassers/drug users/dealers out of the stairwells & parking garages
Oh man
It is about the gay imagery on the posters. If it was about anything else those hideous over-sized signs hawking mobile phones, botox and all the other stupid crappy trinkets for idiot brain dead consumers would also be dealt with. But they're not. Its the gay male sex stupid.
I hate Posters
As a non-downtown resident I rely on websites and our two gay newspapers to tell me what's going on in the clubs and bars. Postering is the most ineffective way to communicate. I've watched as someone will put up a poster and 5 minutes later someone else will cover that with 2 different ones. Then someone comes along and covers those with 3 different ones. Our village does look unkept and getting rid of posters is a great first start. The only ones who are pro-poster have some sort of vested interest in them. During PRIDE I even see them tacked to trees! Come on people get real. They're horrible and I commend the new look and initiative to beautify our village.
Grow up people
There are several new poster boards in the village now, ample space for important announcements featuring naked men. No one seems to have thought to thank the BIA for funding these. So allow me to be the first. THANKS BIA! You're providing awesome, visible spaces for postering in the village, which lets our gay event promoters get their messages out effectively and efficiently. And it keeps the village cleaner and more inviting.

To those who see this as an infringement on gay rights: You'd think these events were performing some sort of community service. Promoters use sex to sell a product. But calm down. It's not the sex on the posters that's the issue, it's the way their unencumbered proliferation makes the neighbourhood look tattered and uninviting.

The village will look a lot better once these pole wraps are in place. And you'll know where to look for announcements about your next jockstrap sock hop. It's win-win, thanks to this well-thought-out initiative.

KWT you still have my vote, and the vote of all level-headed gay people in the village.
You must be new here, Ken
And the only gay male without a sense of humour.
@Joe Clark re Keystrokes
Really Mr. Clark, there's no need for boorishness here. Chill, my friend.
condo masters
Please, the BIA lackeys are only following the steps their new condo masters are laying out for them

PROUD ---DIRTY--- FAGGOT is bang on.
Keystrokes
I am not the Joe who provided the keystrokes above, but I have been touch-typing those since 1984 with no difficulty. We’ve upped our standards; up yours.
@ Joe re quotes
Good Heavens, this is becoming confusing! I don't have a degree in Computer SCiences and my brain is addled! Thank you, though. LRBATY (Laugh Right Back At Ya')
Option+LeftBracket =“ (OpenQuote)
Option+LeftBracket =“ (OpenQuote) Shift+Option+LeftBracket =” (CloseQuote) “ ” Like this: “Quote” —But only on a Mac. —Shift+Option+hyphen. LOL

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